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Continued from....  Empty Nest, like totally empty this time!

I’ll be honest, I found my daughter going last year, really hard, there was a real hole in my life. Now that doubles…

It’s a real grief that’s going on here. I have to honour that, you do too. It won’t serve us to ignore the loss, and it is a loss. We must cry our tears, feel our aching heart, and let time pass to adjust.

And it’s not even that I’m that worried about them, I mean I am, I worry a bit, but am not losing sleep, am able to let go of that part mostly and trust that they are sensible enough that nothing mad will happen that couldn’t happen to anyone if faith had her way.

No, it’s actually just missing them, their presence, the hugs, their smell. I think even the dogs miss them. I mean if we’re talking hugs, then the dogs are definitely missing out!

We did get instructions to give extra cuddles, kisses, good mornings and goodnights… but it’s one thing getting a greeting from each human, but extra long greetings from one human, well Sandy, our 15 year-old-sometimes-contrary-Labrador, is like, no, stop, enough already, get off me!

One lady said to me; you’ll be ready to live your own life again by the time they move out, you’ll relish the freedom…

I mean, ok, I get there is more freedom in that I don’t have to think about their food, when are they coming home, etc., etc…. however, it doesn’t really make up for it.

Nevertheless, it is the way of the world. We have kids, they grow up, they make their own lives and move on, distancing themselves from us.

And so they should.

We didn’t have them for them to stay at home.

It’s not their fault that they were our career for the last 18 years and we’ve just gotten sacked!

They will always be our children. We will always watch out for them and be there for them. They are our everything.

Yet, we have a responsibility to our children and to ourselves to move on ion this phase. It will not serve the relationship if we, as parents, are holding on to them.

We have to find other ways to fill our time, our thoughts, our purpose…

Time to figure out what’s next on our journey, cause waiting on the kids will be too hard. And anyway, it’s not fair to place all our focus on them, they want to live their lives, time to get back and live ours.

Tips to getting back to your own life;

•Start by brain storming the things you used to enjoy before you had kids.

•Brain-storm the things you wish you had more time for while you had kids.

•Brain storm things that you’ve heard your friends talk about, that you vaguely were interested in.

•Now methodically look at your ideas and see what is feasible to attend from a distance, time and financial aspect.

•Decide to do at least one by the end of October.

•Make a further plan to try others too, based on your notes so far.

I suppose it’s like before we had children; no one could tell us how our life would change, we could not have imagined how much, and how we would cope, and we did.

I think this will be the same. We cannot imagine our life without them being so present, like they have been, however we will get used to it, it will become the norm.

In the meantime, be kind to yourself. Listen to how you feel and honour that, give yourself time to adjust and along the way, gently prompt yourself in this or that new direction.

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